Physical therapy is used to treat a variety of injuries and conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system. It can help reduce pain, restore and maintain physical function, as well as offer many other health benefits. In order to get the most from your physical therapy treatment, it takes commitment and motivation, which can be difficult to maintain if you require a long course of treatment. The good news is, there are steps you can take to keep yourself motivated throughout your treatment.
What Is Physical Therapy?
Physical therapy can be used to treat a number of injuries and conditions that cause disability, such as arthritis, back and neck pain, sciatica, and sports related injuries. It can be used as an alternative to surgery and may also be recommended post-surgery to ensure a successful recovery.
Physical therapy can include a variety of treatments and therapeutic interventions, such as soft tissue and joint mobilization, massage therapy, heat and cold therapy, therapeutic ultrasound, bracing and taping, strengthening exercises, and functional exercise, to reduce swelling, improve circulation, and alleviate pain.
Customized Treatment Program
Physical therapists aim to encourage patients’ self-management of their conditions to maintain mobility and function throughout life. If you require physical therapy, your therapist will work with you to design a customized treatment program which is tailored to support your health goals, enabling you to achieve a successful outcome. Therapy can also focus on strengthening weak or vulnerable areas and offer techniques and exercises to prevent future injury.
Motivation during treatment is different for everybody, and although some people will be motivated in order to see quick results and to get back to their original fitness, others may find physical therapy a challenge, particularly during a lengthy course of rehabilitation. Your physical therapist will aim to keep you motivated during treatment, but there are things you can do, as well.
Set Realistic Goals
Depending on your condition or injury, the process of physical therapy can take time. It is important to discuss expectations of your treatment with your therapist and to have a clear treatment plan in place in order to reach specific goals and see progress, which will help with motivation.
Make Exercise Part of Your Routine
It can be easy to find an excuse to skip your physical therapy exercises, but by ensuring you keep up with your exercises, you can prevent pain and mobility problems from returning.
Try to make exercise a habit, choose a set time of day to do your exercises which you can keep to, such as first thing in the morning, or before you sit down in front of the TV in the evening. Incorporate exercise into your lifestyle, even simple things like taking the stairs at work instead of the elevator, or walking around the block during your lunch break can help improve your fitness and keep you motivated.
Track Your Progress
Seeing results will keep you motivated. Try to keep a record of your progress and the effect physical therapy has had in reducing your pain or improving your mobility and flexibility. Just jotting down your level of pain on a scale of 1-10 each day can help you monitor progress and improvement.
Motivation with Music
Music can be a good motivator and energizer during physical therapy and exercise, as well as improve your mood and overall wellbeing. Often, there will be background music playing at physical therapy clinics, but if there isn’t, or it’s not to your taste, ask your therapist if you can bring along your own music to your therapy sessions. Do the same for your home exercises. Use the opportunity to listen to some music that provides motivation and a bit of music therapy.
Find a Physical Therapy Buddy
Other people can be great motivators. Seek support from a partner or friend to help keep you motivated during your rehabilitation program. You can also speak to your therapist about buddying up with someone in a similar situation to share your experiences and progress along the way. Although your therapist cannot share other patients’ personal details or information with you, there may be an opportunity for group rehabilitation within your physical therapy clinic, where you can meet and get to know individuals with similar issues.
Speak To Your Physical Therapist
If you have any concerns about completing your treatment or feel your home exercise program isn’t working for you, contact your therapist before problems arise to seek advice and support. Your therapist can help adapt your program to better suit your lifestyle.
Physical Therapy Services in Watertown, NY
If you require physical therapy, talk to the experts at North Country Orthopaedic Group. Our licensed physical therapists can provide you with a thorough evaluation and a custom treatment plan to get you back to doing the activities you enjoy in no time. For more information about our physical therapy services, call us at (315) 782-1650 or you can use our online appointment request form.